MLB, MLB Free Agency

MLB rumors: 3 teams that should take a flier on Dallas Keuchel

With free agent lefty Dallas Keuchel likely on the move again, these teams should take a flier on him.

Who would have thought that a former Cy Young Award winner and two-time All-Star would be one of (if not the) worst pitchers in the game over the past two seasons?

Unfortunately, that’s the exact situation 34-year-old Dallas Keuchel has found himself in.

Keuchel, best known for his strong seven-year tenure as a member of the Houston Astros, has bounced around from the Braves to the White Sox and most recently, the Diamondbacks. Last season, he managed just a 5.28 ERA in 32 appearances while posting lower than usual strikeout numbers as well as career-highs in both walks and home runs allowed.

His first eight starts with the White Sox this year were enough for him to be DFA’d and later released, leading him to sign a minor-league contract with the Dbacks and getting his contract selected shortly after. All told, Keuchel is 2-7 in 12 starts this season with an 8.53 ERA, 10 home runs allowed and 27 walks against just 38 strikeouts in over 50 innings.

MLB rumors: 3 teams that should take a chance on Dallas Keuchel

St. Louis Cardinals

Heading into the season, the St. Louis Cardinals certainly would not have found themselves on a list like this. With a very strong starting rotation mix of Adam Wainwright, Alex Reyes, Steven Matz, Miles Mikolas, Jordan Hicks, Dakota Hudson, Jack Flaherty and multiple minor league starters, the Cardinals seemed set.

Here we are nearing the end of July and the Cards are down to three established starters and rookie Andre Pallante. Hicks struggled as a starter and has been moved back to the bullpen and each of Flaherty, Hudson and Reyes have been bitten by the injury bug multiple times.

While the fit between the contending Cardinals and the struggling Keuchel may seem odd at first, this is a Cardinals club that needs pitching in the worst way if it is to continue hanging around in the playoff race. Keuchel is just two seasons removed from a 2020 season in which he posted a 1.99 ERA in 11 starts, good for fifth in the Cy Young voting and is a highly experienced arm that could help this team if he can rediscover his mojo.

Baltimore Orioles

Wait, what? Yes, the very same Baltimore Orioles who have stunned the baseball world by reaching a .500 record for the first time in years and are riding a ten-game stretch in which they’ve gone 8-2. Plus, their run differential is just -7 at the halfway point in the season. I could go on and on about the Orioles, who nobody expected to be even close to where they are now.

Keuchel would be an excellent fit on this Orioles club because there is surely less pressure than what he’s experienced in other environments as of late. Yes, the Orioles are fun but no, they are not going to make the postseason this year. They have also had their fair share of injuries as each of Kyle Bradish, Chris Ellis and John Means are out and there’s very little starting pitching depth behind the current foursome of Tyler Wells, Jordan Lyles, Dean Kremer and Spenser Watkins.

Baltimore would be a great place for Keuchel to go to rebuild some of his diminished value and show that he still has what it takes to play at the big league level. It’s a low-pressure environment where he could either succeed and raise his value or struggle and be released with no penalties towards the Orioles.

Boston Red Sox

Staying in the AL East, the Boston Red Sox also seem like a solid fit for Keuchel’s services. With half of the major league roster on the IL (Hill, Paxton, Seabold, Wacha, Winckowski, Barnes, Danish, Strahm, Taylor and soon to be Sale), there are plenty of open slots in this rotation, or even bullpen, for the aging southpaw.

With Chris Sale on the way to yet another stint on the injured list, there’s going to be an opening in the rotation soon and Keuchel would fit in nicely as the staff’s lone lefty. The Red Sox still have playoff aspirations but currently find themselves 16.5 GB in the division but just 2.0 GB of an AL Wild Card spot.

Like the Cardinals, the addition of Keuchel would be a risk but not a very big one. If he is able to find success like he’s had in the past, the signing would be an absolute steal as he helps the club’s march to October. Keuchel would be a low-cost, low-risk signing for Boston, one they should seriously consider.

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